Sophia wants to live in a world filled with visionary changemakers, wild places in which to contemplate, and dark chocolate within arm’s reach.

As a budding climate change adaptation ecologist, she has conducted research to inform the conservation of the endangered Karner blue butterfly and worked for the Notre Dame Global Adaptation Initiative, a non-profit that provides tools for public and private sectors to improve lives and livelihoods under climate change. Most recently as a Future Park Leaders of Emerging Change intern, Sophia collaborated with park staff and scientists to develop adaptation strategies for cultural and natural resources at Devils Postpile National Monument. She has also found herself mired in a remote bog with carnivorous plants, swimming alongside Galapagos sea turtles, and covered with 118 mosquito bites…all for the sake of science.

Sophia is a PhD student at the Center for Systems Integration and Sustainability at Michigan State University with Dr. Jianguo Liu. She is interested in the impacts of climate change on protected areas and their associated tourism industry and gateway communities. She is also a fellow of the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program.

When she’s not musing over an ecological question or on an excursion into the wilderness, you can find her running on the trails, indulging in leafy greens, or immersed in an irresistible book.



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